With both political parties having their conventions this week, there is a lot of commentary about who is good, who has the best position, and worst of all who is “right”. In place of rants, lets start some dialogues.
I think it is important for people to talk to each other, especially when they disagree.
There was an interesting point made on a public radio station which illustrates this. A woman was discouraged when a liberal congressman who was in her district refused to consider a restriction on partial birth abortion. She knew that if he took a position of absolutely no restriction on abortion he would not ever be re-elected in that district.
The point was that when positions on either side are so absolute, it prevents any good thing from getting done. We need to recognize that people do have some valid points of view and we need to listen to each other. Having a respectful attitude toward each other will go a long way toward some reconciliation and some agreement.
Democrats pay a very high price for complete intransigence on abortion, and Republicans pay a price when they refuse to consider even mild restrictions on gun sales. We both need to recognize that abortion is a tragic situation and can be examined. We both need to recognize that unlimited gun sales often lead to unwarranted loss of life.
Both Democrats and Republicans can discuss the fact that not all people in poverty are taking advantage of the government, but we also need to recognize that some are. Helping others too much can be unhelpful, but refusing any help or pretending that the playing field is level when it is not is also unhelpful.
I also think that true dialogue means sharing our own thoughts and experiences rather than passing on and repeating slogans, and propaganda. Our own experiences are real, varied and nuanced, while slogans and propaganda is too often exaggerated, based on one or two examples, passed down without context.
All sides of the political spectrum (we have plenty more than two) have many things that they could say to each other. A true dialogue could begin.